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Thread: Rank and File: A clerk's war Germany 1936 (Semper Fi)

  1. #481
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Modo View Post
    Too bad you don't manually control planes. A few logistical strikes would work like a handbrake on the Belgians.

    .........

    In France, the front is short, so the AI actually has reserves or units it can pull away from the frontline quickly.

    In the USSR, the front is too long for the AI to ever have numbers that would allow it a defense in depth. Pulling units away from the front is not easy due to the distances and bad infrastructure. This is made even worse by limited manpower in 1.3, and the fact that the USSR AI completely ignores militia in favor of stronger, but fewer units.
    I think lack of units is holding up the Belgians: they can't advance too far without leaving their supply line exposed, which they don't like doing.

    My intell on SU would back up your comments: they have 72 divs but only half my manpower.

    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    Surprising to see that Warsawa has fallen, but no report on losses has been sent from the general

    Great update, yet again
    You are right, obviously in the excitement nobody thought to check the report. I am sure it will be fixed.


    Quote Originally Posted by Servant View Post
    I wasn't talking about that. I meant to say that if you attack the United Kingdom and defeat them, then USA knows that it can't attack the Reich. It will have no choice but seek a white peace, thereby getting them out of the war.
    Sorry - misunderstood. That could work but at the moment USA is nowhere near joining Allies. With Japan slowly declining through lack of RM seems unlikely USA will join the war in the foreseeable future (unless there is an event I am unaware of).

    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    Luckily, the USA aren't involved in the war. Yet. Occupying the UK will have to wait until Poland, Belgium and France have been defeated. Once those objectives have been achieved, the ground forces will probably have a small window where they can be used against Britain, but I doubt the Kriegsmarine and the Luftwaffe will be able to support them.
    I haven't been able to locate any major UK fleets as yet and am reluctant to commit to an invasion untill I know where they are. But the French are my most pressing problem. Only when I can reliably estimate when they will collapse (if ever!) will I start to really plan ahead. If (as I have seen several times in the forums) the SU will attack me in 1942 then I need to get ready for that in preference to naval adventures.

  2. #482
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    Rank and File
    A Clerk’s War


    4th July and 5th July 1939

    The morning of the 4th July I found an excuse to call at the Foreign Ministry on my way to work. I had thought that if Poland had entered into peace negotiations then I might pick some information there. But my discrete enquiries met with polite disclaimers of any such discussions, so I continued to the Reichskanzlei.

    If the Poles were not going to surrender, then they were going to pay a high price. Overnight we moved into Grajewo, sparking a fierce battle. Von Sodenstern is challenging Strzlecki’s mountaineers (22nd Dywizjon Piechoty) who have been reinforced by the 25th DP. Surely he cannot expect to win, outnumbered nearly two to one? And in such difficult terrain? I suppose the Army of East Prussia is keen to just turn the screws on the Poles.



    Battle of Grajewo


    General Feketehalmy-Czeydrew has better odds in his attempt to recover St Wendel. His 27.Infanterie and 61.Infanterie are attacking Kieffer’s single 3eme Legere Division. While it looks good, I have been putting together position maps for some weeks now and know that the French rapidly reinforce when attacked, so I expect the odds to shorten rapidly. The French did try to attack our bombers, but their fighters were detected when they were still over Metz and easily turned back.



    A mortar crew fires at French troops in entrenched in St Wendel



    Battle of St Wendel


    Late in the afternoon we all had a shock – von Massow reported his advance into Warszawa was blocked by another unit, 44th Dywizjon Piechoty. It was only a temporary scare: our two motorised divisions which were spearheading the advance hardly changed gear. Even if they had a problem, von Massow had two more divisions marching behind them. Before I went home 2.Infanterie (motorised) and 3.Infanterie (motorised) were moving into the Polish capital at full speed, having lost a mere 4 men while killing or capturing 39. (In all the excitement I forgot to include the casualty report from yesterday’s attack on Warszawa. A conscientious staff member, Oberleutnant Baltasar, has notified me of this breach of reporting standards. Losses were 361 German, 181 Polish).



    Polish prisoners captured by our motorised troops in the Battle for Warszawa get transferred to the rear in relative comfort. While they have retreated from the border on foot, they now get carried back in Henschel trucks.



    The Last Battle of Warszawa


    I knew the good news as soon as I woke the next day. When I turned on my little radio there was continuous martial music interrupted regularly by an announcement that the Polish armed forces had stopped resistance. An interesting choice of words. I got ready in even quicker time than normal and sprinted to the Bahnhof, keen to find out what was really happening.

    There was no need to get to work to understand the newsreaders careful phrasing: I grabbed a newspaper and soon found that while the Polish Army had been ordered to cease fighting to avoid needless casualties, the Polish Government has refused to surrender and has fled (presumably through neutral countries to London). The rest of the articles were useless fluff, obviously written by someone who had no further knowledge but a lot of newspaper columns to fill.



    Polish prisoners taken in the last stages of the battle of Warszawa


    At work I had no difficulty finding out the real news, anyone who knew the details was surrounded by a group of listeners hanging on every word. We have imposed a military government over Poland, but not the whole country. That was the real surprise: move than half the land area has been seized by the Soviet Union! Although we have the richest, most populated and most developed regions, Russia has taken control of vast areas of agricultural land. My informant in the Foreign Office back in April has been proved to be correct: there must have been a secret protocol to the Non-Aggression Pact. All conflict had ceased at midnight, and after 50 days the guns were silent. I was struck by the strange coincidence: midnight of 4th July, the day the USA declared itself independent, and now the day that the Poles lost their independence for ever.



    Poland divided: the Soviet Union has won handsomely for doing nothing, while Hungary has retained only a sliver of the territory it occupied (though it has retained the city of Lwow).



    Soviet troops cross the border: like our troops weeks ago, they too have taken the Polish Customs sign as a souvenir


    Of course the generals whose troops were actually in combat at the time of the cease-fire claimed victory (it will read so much better in the divisional history). So Czestochowa was claimed as a victory by Geyr von Schweppenburg for the loss of 231 men, Opoczno by von Kuchler (69), Grajewo by von Sodenstern (182) and Lomza by Agricola (653). Polish losses were 909, 317, 115 and 524 respectively.

    I also heard (and it was made clear to me that I was not to spread this too far) that at midnight the Russians had issued ultimata to the Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. The details of each ultimatum varied, but my informant (who is attached to von Neurath’s personal staff) told me that this is immaterial: the essentials are the same. Each country must give up its independence and accept Soviet rule. (Agreeing to keep this secret turned out to be easy: within hours the three governments had been told that they could expect no assistance from Germany and had accepted the annexation of their countries by their much more powerful and ruthless neighbour.)



    Lithuanian tanks prepared to defend Vilnius: the Lithuanian Army had about 20 of these 4 ton Vickers M1933 tanks and about 10 M1939s but luckily for the crews the government decided that resistance to the Soviet demands was futile.


    I found all this while making my way from the front door of the Kanzlei to my office. When I finally opened the door, I found my desk groaning (metaphorically) under the weight of transfer documents. Sighing, I took off my jacket and started to sort them out. It seems the Fuhrer’s expressed desire for no delay in moving our forces west has been taken to heart.

    The Luftwaffe was already on the move. 3rd Taktischeluftflotte had been taken from Polen Army Nord and assigned to Benelux Army, its new base being Wilhelmshaven. 5th Fliegerkorps was now based in Berlin, directly ordered by OB East. Every other plane was transferred to the Westwall Army. They were in the air already, heading for airfields at Bitburg, Munchen, Stuttgart, Dusseldorf and Kassel.

    As if that were not enough, pilots had been sent straight to the Messerschmitt factory to pick up brand new Bf 109G fighters and fly “Sturm” geschwader to its home at Bitburg. Stacked with the necessary transfer forms for dozens of individual air units and tens of thousands of Luftwaffe personnel were literally hundreds of requisition orders from the commanders of the designated aerodromes. Fuel, spare parts, ammunition, maintenance equipment, rations: the lists went on and on. I can just imagine the chaos across the half dozen Luftwaffe bases as they tried to be ready for the influx. It would be a few days before we could expect any missions to be flown, but soon our soldiers would have massive assistance.

    The Heer would be slower, and the job immeasurably more complex. But a start had been made. 1st Panzerkorps has been detached from the Army of East Prussia and is entraining for Dusseldorf. How Bayerlein has managed to get enough trains organised to simultaneously move 1st and 5th Panzer Divisions and 20th and 29th motorised divisions is beyond me. The man must have been working day and night to achieve this.

    II Armeekorps HQ with 2.Infanterie and 32 Infanterie is heading for Minden (3rd, 71st and 23rd Infantry were still recovering from recent action and would follow.) Similarly, II Armeekorps with 18.Infanterie was boarding trains bound for Dortmund, with 8th and 28th Infantry ordered to catch up as soon as possible. Army of Polen Nord HQ, stripped of all its units, was on its way to Frankfiurt, where it would be set up as part of the new structure when units were in place.



    A troop-train heading west: our soldiers keen to retake provinces taken by the French and to repay the Belgians for their perfidity.


    The entire Osterreich Army is assembling for another complex railway exercise as they move en masse to Stuttgart. Five full divisions with the HQ units! How the normal train scheduling will manage I don’t know, but I sure that no Stuttgart factory will be allowed to run out of materials while the troops are being moved!

    The final rail movements were marked Highest Priority. The Sturm Marines were to be rushed from Denmark, with the Headquarters bound for Kolkar, 1st Sturm Marine Division for Monchengladbach and 2nd Sturm Marine Division for Koln. The industrial heartland of the Ruhr must be protected from the Belgians.

    Unfortunately neither 1st nor 2nd Leichte Panzerkorps were able to start moving. Nearly all their troops were exhausted and the individual units needed some time before their men and vehicles were fit to be moved. In a way this is fortunate as from the forms and schedules I had in front of me every locomotive and railway carriage in the Reich would be in service. Even more worrying, every rail line would surely be at maximum capacity, even with our research into methods of maximising infrastructure usage. I hate to think how many supplies will be consumed over the next few weeks while most of the Wehrmacht moves from one side of the country to the other.

    Among the Luftwaffe transfer and requisition documents were some more interesting reports of attempts by the British to again get through to our cities. The bombers were first met over Bebra by Christiansen with five geschwader. By the time they got to Leipzig we had nine geschwader attacking the bombers, which were jettisoning their bombs and desperately taking evasive action. Weise chased them all the way to Duren by which time the last two of our fighter units said that nearly 20% of the strategic bombers had been shot down. Despite the exemplary record of our Home Defence fighter shield, we have installed anti-aircraft guns at both Koln and Hannover.



    Christiansen punishes the British for having the temerity to threaten our cities


    Our Hungarian allies have come to our assistance at our time of need. Realising that the occupation of Poland will tie up troops who are needed in the west, they have voluntarily provided us with four full divisions of troops. These have been gratefully received by the Heer, and renamed 1st to 4th Ungarn Exeditionary Divisions. It is perhaps a case of both sides getting a good deal, as while we have the benefit of thousands of reliable troops, the Hungarians get the benefit that we will not only maintain the four divisions, but also re-equip and train them to the level of our basic regiments. Nobody here begrudges the expense – any manpower increase to the Heer is welcome, and as one of General Blomberg’s advisers said to me while he waited for a document to be located, even if the Hungarians take them back when they are fully upgraded, it means we know we can count on them having at least four modern divisions!

    It was only later that we realised the sacrifice the Hungarians were making. Many of their forward units in Poland were so far from base they could not return. It seems they will be interned by the Russians and railed back to Budapest, but this will take some time. Until then, the Hungarian Army is only a shadow of its full strength.

    It was mid-afternoon and I had barely made a dent in the paperwork when another batch of transfers and rail reschedules were brought in: 71.Infanterie was now ready to move and the Deutsches Reichsbahn was eager to show its efficiency.

    That was it: I closed my door and rolled up my sleeves, determined that I was not going to face this pile of paper in the morning. So that was the end of 5th June, hours of paper shuffling, possibly an anti-climax to the events of the day. The only question now is whether the DRB can deliver its precious cargoes before the French and Belgians realise that this is their last chance to take advantage of our weakness.

    Bombing Summary

    4th July

    Lomza: Kitzinger with 2 x He 111, 2 x Bf 109E: 49 (Attacked by Kalkus with 3 x Interceptors)
    Opoczno: Muller-Michiels with 2 x He 111: 84, 94, 41
    Lomza: Kesselring with 4 x Ju 87B, 2 x He 111, 2 x Bf 109E: 79
    Lomza: Kesselring with 4 x Ju 87B: 73, 115
    St Wendel: Lohr with 2 x Ju 87B: 53
    St Wendel: Sperrle with 1 x Bf 109G, 2 x Ju 87B, 2 x He 111: 115

    5th July

    St Wendel: Lohr with 2 x Ju 87B: 27, 84
    St Wendel: Kesselring: 2 x Ju 87B: 59
    St Wendel: Kesselring with 4 x Ju 87B: 65

    It was only when I double checked the bombing summaries that I could be sure: Kesselring’s Stukas were flying combat missions within hours of rebasing! There should be commendations for some supply clerks at Bitburg airbase who managed to not only get the aircraft refuelled and maintained after their long flight from the Polish border, but also had bombs and ammunition ready.



    The Westwall: while the Battle of St Wendel continues, elsewhere combat has paused. But will the Allies realise this is their last chance?
    Last edited by Uriah; 11-01-2010 at 11:26.

  3. #483
    General Forster's Avatar
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    And now the fun begins.
    Have the Italians done any more for you?

  4. #484
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forster View Post
    And now the fun begins.
    Have the Italians done any more for you?
    Well, give them a few days to get across the country! But yes, now things will be a little more equal.

    I should finish another update tonight and that will include the progress of the Italian war machine. All I will say is that if you are hoping for tales of brilliant military exploits, you will be disappointed.

  5. #485
    All I will say is that if you are hoping for tales of brilliant military exploits, you will be disappointed.
    Nope, I'm hoping to see an angry Hitler hear more and more reports of incompetence while the German Reich slowly stretches from the Urals to the Atlantic.

  6. #486
    Field Marshal loki100's Avatar
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    great stuff - any signs of Von Braushitch's "ugly scenes reminiscent of 1918" in the course of the transfer from Poland to France?

  7. #487
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Servant View Post
    Nope, I'm hoping to see an angry Hitler hear more and more reports of incompetence while the German Reich slowly stretches from the Urals to the Atlantic.
    There is a school of thought that it will allow us to occupy a lot of territory if the Greeks conquer Italy, Hungary and maybe Yugoslavia.

    Quote Originally Posted by loki100 View Post
    great stuff - any signs of Von Braushitch's "ugly scenes reminiscent of 1918" in the course of the transfer from Poland to France?
    No, the aggressive spirit of my German infantry is still high. The only danger is incompetence at the very top: and an inability to decide what to do next!

  8. #488
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    Ah, them Poles finally gave up! Now let the French and Belgians have it! Nobody stands in the way of the Reich and lives to tell about it.

  9. #489
    Field Marshal Baltasar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uriah View Post
    All I will say is that if you are hoping for tales of brilliant military exploits, you will be disappointed.
    In other words, the Italian AI is sticking to historical role models.

  10. #490
    Quote Originally Posted by Uriah View Post
    A conscientious staff member, Oberleutnant Baltasar, has notified me of this breach of reporting standards.
    Nice touch !

    On another topic, where do you find your pictures ? They bring a lot of immersion to your storytelling, I love them !

  11. #491
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoemsiBoemsie View Post
    Ah, them Poles finally gave up! Now let the French and Belgians have it! Nobody stands in the way of the Reich and lives to tell about it.
    We are about to alter our Army stance from "Defend" to "Smite".

    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    In other words, the Italian AI is sticking to historical role models.
    I can live with the stalemate in France and can understand the running around in E Africa, but I am a bit surprised by the swift success of the Greeks. Am beginning to wonder if the Brits have sent an exp. force.

    Quote Originally Posted by kigrwik View Post
    Nice touch !

    On another topic, where do you find your pictures ? They bring a lot of immersion to your storytelling, I love them !
    I thought I had better acknowledge that it was Baltasar that found my mistake! He might start to look for more!

    The pictures are from two main sources: I have a small collection of books and publications on the period and I spend a fair amount of time searching the web (not just going to Wikipedia!). I put in some effort to make sure that the pictures are accurate and fit the narrative, but sometimes I fudge a little. I have mentioned the Reichskanzlei photo that was a few years early: in April 1936 the photo of the Bf 109 is actually of a model, and in April 1937 the mine is not in Germany, but in (I think) New Jersey. After a couple of hours I gave up trying to find a shot of a 1930s German mining operation.

    Oh, and I try not to use pictures that are too well known.

  12. #492
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Rank and File
    A Clerk’s War


    6th July to 14th July 1939

    The week after the fall of Warszawa and the Polish ceasefire went quickly. Across the Reich every locomotive and railway wagon was pressed into service. Although the administration in Berlin was on tenterhooks for a few days, waiting for a French offensive in the west, as time passed and the loaded troop-trains got closer to their destinations, we all began to relax. The only concern was the vast amount of supplies consumed in shifting so many men, horses and equipment across Europe.



    The Reich’s manufacturing base showing the amount of supplies being used to run the railways.


    A few decisions were made, but nothing particularly exciting. Anti-aircraft guns were installed around Schweinfurt, and Marschall Goering has had expansion plans approved for Bitburg, Stuttgart and Frankfurt airfields. Another new airfield is being started. These should be finished in 122 days, if you can believe the construction estimates.

    On the afternoon of the 6th, elements of the 1st Leichte and 2nd Leichte Panzerkorps were ready to be transferred west. Most of the 2nd is headed for Koblenz (3.Infanterie (motorised) is still resting), while from the 1st 4th Leichte Panzer and 13.Infanterie (motorised) are to be based at Wuppertal while they wait for 2nd Leichte Panzer and 2.Infanterie (motorised) to catch up.

    Hungary has decided to provide us with another infantry division: now called 5th Ungarn Expeditionary Division. The other four divisions have been posted to garrison duties in Poznan, Torun, Warszawa and Krakow. No train travel for them, they are marching the whole way.

    By the 8th, more units were sufficiently recovered to start west. 3.Infanterie (II Armeekorps) is on its way to Haupstedt, 8.Infanterie and 28.Infanterie (both from VIII Armeekorps) are to travel to Wuppertal and Hennef respectively.

    We have been lucky: Bottcher and his marines just managed to reach Monchengladbach before van der Hofstadt’s 7eme Infantry. There was a short battle, but the 1st Sturm Marines were in no mood for nonsense and within hours the Belgians were retreating, leaving 15 dead to the Marine’s 5 casualties.



    Battle of Monchengladbach


    More rail transfer documents: 23.Infanterie (II AK) to Nienburg, 3.Division (motorised) (2nd Leichte Panzer) to Kaiserlauten. I hear from out transport analysts that marshalling yards across the country are empty and that rail controllers are working double shifts to clear the backlogs. Regardless of the difficulties, the troops are still rolling west.

    The first Sicherungs Division (52nd) has been deployed to active service in Warszawa to forestall any thoughts of insurrection. When the Hungarians arrive at their destinations we should, according to OB East, be able to place all combat units at the border with the Soviet Union.

    The Armee de l’Air tried to bomb the Westwall on the 9th, but Waber was waiting for them and none of Jauneaud’s bombers got through. Our air superiority in the west seems unchallenged. This is probably a good thing as Kesselring’s Stuka pilots brought back unwelcome news from a bombing mission on the4 afternoon of the 9th: they have positively identified British units in St Wendel! The United Kingdom has sent an expeditionary force to France! This has prompted a lot of closed doors sessions as Wehrmacht officers brief Ministers on the implications.



    French Amiot 143 bombers make another abortive attempt to reach the battlefields of the Westwall.


    A new motorised division (36th) was ready the next day, but has not been attached to an army korps as yet. It will defend Kalkar while we wait for a new Panzer division to arrive.

    The luck of the “Einbaums” finally ran out. The Type II U-boats have sunk a few merchantmen off the coast of England, and have provided much useful information about troop movements. At 10AM on 10th July they were located in the Mouth of the Thames by Admiral Warburton Lee’s 10th and 36th Destroyer Flotillas. Our commander von Nordeck tried to take advantage of the overcast skies and intermittent rain, but his outclassed boats were attacked mercilessly and 2nd and 3rd Unterseebootsflottilles were wiped out. 4th Unterseebootsflottille has fled to Wilhelmshaven for repairs.



    Battle of the Mouth of the Thames


    Better news for the Kriegsmarine came the next day as the Panzerschiffe “von der Tann” officially entered service. It will be based in Wilhelmshaven while it loads supplies and fuel, getting ready to join the Nordseeflotte. At the same time the battered U-boats of 4 Unterseebootsflottille arrived in port, and the damage was evaluated by senior officers. It was decided that it was not worthwhile to repair the U-boats (they had sustained over 60% damage) and the unit has been disbanded and the vessels sold for scrap. A sad end for our first U-boats, but we have to be realistic. At least this means my brother-in-law will never have to go to sea in an “Einbaum” again!



    Type II U-boats wait to be scrapped: to take them to sea in 1939 would be suicide.


    One of our research teams made a timely breakthrough on the 13th July. We developed some new ideas to enhance our operational level command, which should increase our ability to speed up attacks. This line of research was so promising that the team has been authorised to proceed with its investigations.

    The “Phony War” in the west appears over: we have had to concede defeat in St Wendel, losing 1,554 men to the French 1,024. My prediction was proved correct; by the time the battle ended the French had reinforced the original single division to nearly 45,000 men. Our two divisions were simply swamped and had no option but to call of the attack. Their sacrifice, however, tied up 5 divisions for nearly a week: precious time used to bring out eastern armies closer.

    General Heunert has come under attack in Morbach. De Bazelaire de Ruppiert is using an armour division (3rd Infantry) with 71eme Infantry to drive 61.Infanterie from the province. Our troops are dug in well and the Westwall Army HQ believes that they can hold for some days.



    Battle of Morbach


    That may be long enough. II Armeekorps HQ has arrived in Minden and has been attached to the Benelux Army, while Polen Army Nord HQ has arrived at Frankfurt am Main. It has been renamed the Army of the Ardennes and assigned to Heeresgruppe West. Although the Osterreich Army is still entrained, it too has been assigned to Heeresgruppe West.

    Once again French bombers attempted a combat mission and this time their reception was even hotter: Christiansen met Valin’s single bomber Groupe with seven geschwader of fighters.

    As we wait for another two U-boat flotillas to be ready for sea, Kriegsmarine analysts have refined out trade interdiction tactics. With the new approach, our U-boat Kapitans will be better able to position their boats to attack convoys. Given the disappointing results to date, I hope this leads to an improved strike rate. The Heer’s demands that we leap ahead of our neighbours (and enemies) in infantry equipment will be met as the research team is now developing a better light artillery gun to be issued to our infantry regiments.

    Perhaps a sign that the Westwall Army is gearing up for an offensive of its own: General von Berendt has been ordered to retake Duren from the Belgians. He has just the one division against two motorised divisions but we believe the Belgians have not managed to bring all their units up to full strength so he should have superiority in numbers.



    Battle of Duren


    Most of our bombers are still reorganising and waiting for supply lines to be upgraded, but the Luftwaffe has been able to mount some attacks to support our troops in the west.

    Bombing Summary

    St Wendel: Lohr with 2 x Ju 87B: 24, 33, 36, 54, 33, 43, 31
    St Wendel: Kesselring with 4 x Ju 87B: 100, 101, 70, 81, 90, 77, 66, 118, 101, 78, 53, 93, 83, 94, 71, 117, 68, 121, 111, 96, 89, 115
    Aachen: Sperrle with 1 x Bf 109G, 2 x He 111: 148, 101
    St Wendel: Kesselring with 1 x Bf 109G, 2 x He 111, 4 x Ju87B: 46
    St Wendel: Kesselring with 2 x Ju 87B: 62, 113, 89, 74, 32, 41
    St Wendel: Udet with 2 x Ju 87B: 85
    Duren: Lohr with 2 x Ju 87B: 71
    Duren: Sperrle with 1 x Bf 109G, 2 x He 111, 2 x Ju 87B: 137, 115




    Our troops moving west: it may appear slow, but our transport infrastructure is under huge strain, and supplies are being consumed at a high rate. Note large numbers of Hungarian units leaving Budapest after being repatriated from internment in the Soviet Union.



    Westwall at end of 14th July


    Von Berendt has been joined in his attack on the Belgians by 46.Infanterie from Trier and 10.Infanterie from Koln. Not only have they mounted an attack on three fronts, making it hard for Gerard to mount a continuous defence, but they have also encircled some of his troops.

    On the other hand, 61.Infanterie in Morbach is showing signs of weakening under the pressure of the Belgian attack. De Ruppiert’s units are stronger than we had anticipated and Heunert may not be able to hold on as long as originally expected.



    The Finns may not be able to hold until winter, as the Russian armour has already inflicted at least one defeat and the provinces of Kakisalmi and Pitkaratnta have been lost. The Baltische Flotte will remain cruising in the Inner Gulf of Finland.


    Following the surprise discovery of the “secret” Italian war in Greece (though to be accurate, it should be described as a war in Albania!), our liaison officers have put together a series of position maps for the Italian armed forces. They do not make for pleasant viewing. The Greeks have pushed the Italians from another Albanian province, and now hold both Vlore and Korce.



    The Greek Army surges across the border into Albania.



    On the French Italian border, there appears to be a stalemate.



    In East Africa, the Italians are in full retreat, being chased by British armour units. As well as Tokar, the British now also Akordat.

  13. #493
    Field Marshal OKH's Avatar
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    Congrats on your victory in Poland. Sorry it was a rough one. The situation in the west is a little worrying though. How many Div are you going to leave along the border with SU? Historically it was 18. How many Div do you have for the western campaign? Inf/Arm/etc ? It looks like Italy is pinning down 20-30 div.With Belg in the war, have you decided on a plan yet. I waited until the fall of '40, inorder to build up my forces. In your case I'm worried that if you launch an attack through Bel/Hol.....the AI will test the Siegfried line again. The level of fortifications currently employed will not deter an attack.
    Last edited by OKH; 12-01-2010 at 05:12.

  14. #494
    Field Marshal OKH's Avatar
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    On the subject of the SU. They will not attack you until '42, if you don't attack them first. So you have some breathing room here. The window of opportunity is about 1yr. I am running a test game to see how long it takes them to react to war. They DOW'd me in April '42, and when I loaded up as them in Jan '43, they had just finished mobilizing their army, they had +19 MP. However, they have 1100 brigades. They outnumber me 5or 6 to 1 in armour, 4-1 in infantry. The only place where I have an advantage is in the air. I plan on attacking them in the summer of '44....they should have 1200-1500 by then....it will be a real brawl.

    So if your situation in the west is going to cause a delay in Barbarosa, I advise you to fortify your eastern border. The SU OOB is gigantic, their achilles heel, is the 1 year MP/Mobilization issue they have. If you are unable to take advantage of this, you need to formulate plan B.

  15. #495
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OKH View Post
    Congrats on your victory in Poland. Sorry it was a rough one. The situation in the west is a little worrying though. How many Div are you going to leave along the border with SU? Historically it was 18. How many Div do you have for the western campaign? Inf/Arm/etc ? It looks like Italy is pinning down 20-30 div.With Belg in the war, have you decided on a plan yet. I waited until the fall of '40, inorder to build up my forces. In your case I'm worried that if you launch an attack through Bel/Hol.....the AI will test the Siegfried line again. The level of fortifications currently employed will not deter an attack.
    I had not counted before I read this post, but the number of divisions on the eatern border is ................. 18!!!

    Doesn't count a Sicherungs Div in Warszawa or the 5 Hung. Exp. Divs, but a strange coincidence.

    I have started to move in the West, and the initial plan is to try to knock the Belgians out of the war. Depending on how long that takes and the weather at that time, we may push for Paris, but I think it is more likely we will then halt for the winter. I am leaving nearly all the Westwall Army intact, and it will have shorter line to defend, so it should be able to at least hold its positions.

  16. #496
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OKH View Post
    On the subject of the SU. They will not attack you until '42, if you don't attack them first. So you have some breathing room here. The window of opportunity is about 1yr. I am running a test game to see how long it takes them to react to war. They DOW'd me in April '42, and when I loaded up as them in Jan '43, they had just finished mobilizing their army, they had +19 MP. However, they have 1100 brigades. They outnumber me 5or 6 to 1 in armour, 4-1 in infantry. The only place where I have an advantage is in the air. I plan on attacking them in the summer of '44....they should have 1200-1500 by then....it will be a real brawl.

    So if your situation in the west is going to cause a delay in Barbarosa, I advise you to fortify your eastern border. The SU OOB is gigantic, their achilles heel, is the 1 year MP/Mobilization issue they have. If you are unable to take advantage of this, you need to formulate plan B.
    Unless something goes disastrously wrong, we should be ready for Barbarossa in 1941. I am keen to take Spain, but may have to evalaute the rsik/return.

    All this talk of more than a 1000 brigades is abit frightnening: I think Ihave about 400 at the moment.

  17. #497
    Sadly in current HoI3 the SU is mostly the house of cards Hitler and most of his generals thought it was.

    No defense in depths and without giving them 1000 additional MP they will not even be able to bring their (admittedly) huge number of divisions up to strength. While I agree that due to the AI flaws it might be easier to turtle in and smash them later I dont think it is neccessary (even with AI controlled armies).

    CharonJr

  18. #498
    Grats on Conquering Poland with the AI....i personally dont have much trust for the capabilities of the AI so i prefer to handle everything myself.
    But its exciting to see that the AI is actually able to do things right. Even trough not much can be done wrong handling Poland.

    Looking forward to see how the AI will be handling France and later on the Soviets and how it will fare there.

    Still love youre writing style, youre doing a great job with entertaining us here

  19. #499
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CharonJr View Post
    Sadly in current HoI3 the SU is mostly the house of cards Hitler and most of his generals thought it was.

    No defense in depths and without giving them 1000 additional MP they will not even be able to bring their (admittedly) huge number of divisions up to strength. While I agree that due to the AI flaws it might be easier to turtle in and smash them later I dont think it is neccessary (even with AI controlled armies).

    CharonJr
    From what you have said and the previous prosts from OKH, am I right in thinking that the SU gets about 1,000 MP per year at war? I don't like to load as the enemy in current games (call me old-fashioned) but from Intelligence, the Soviets in mid 39 have about 70+ Divs and about 500MP. I have no idea what their MP rate is in peace, but I can see that by mid 41 they will easily have more than 2 to one, and more if France is a bloodbath. I suppose it will come down to the AI, but I'll play it by ear.

    I note that "So Wie Wir Kampfen" AAR ended with a massive SU victory: has the SU been so badly weakened by 1.3 that this is no longer possible?

    But you have not taken into account the most important asset that the Russians have: I am playing the Germans! Anything is possible. I had one game where I sent my headquarters units to Russia, forgetting to also order their divisions. There wasn't much left a week or so later by the time the soldiers arrived.


    EDIT: I have just checked: SWWK I am sure was a 1.3 game. I am hesistant to say I am a better player than Eastern Empires (or anyone over the age of 6), so a German victory is not assured. On the other hand I checked SU again and they now have 64 Divs and less than 100MP. Either the Finns are absolutely murdering them or my spies have been telling fibs.
    Last edited by Uriah; 12-01-2010 at 10:33.

  20. #500
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arasis View Post
    Grats on Conquering Poland with the AI....i personally dont have much trust for the capabilities of the AI so i prefer to handle everything myself.
    But its exciting to see that the AI is actually able to do things right. Even trough not much can be done wrong handling Poland.

    Looking forward to see how the AI will be handling France and later on the Soviets and how it will fare there.

    Still love youre writing style, youre doing a great job with entertaining us here
    Thanks arasis.

    I was the same as you, I moved every unit personally as I didn't trust the AI to do what I wanted. But I have found it quite exciting to issue orders and hope that my units do as I want. Of course it is far more realistic too, but it does add to the enjoyment to have unexpected things happen. There have been a few cases where my bombers ignored what I believed to be the best targets, but have turned defeats into narrow wins. And the AI is far better than me at "soaking off" attacks: stopping enemy units from reinforcing key battles.

    But I will be interested to see how it goes in a bigger theatre with more units.

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